A few weeks ago, I was speaking to someone about health IT and nursing informatics as a career pathway following direct nursing care.
The transition from direct nursing care to an IT role in healthcare informatics can be significant. The obvious change is stepping away from providing patient care in the sense that we tend to think of it.
Instead of being assigned the care of one to many patients (the number varying depending on your clinical area), nurses transitioning into a health IT role will be working as part of a team on digital health projects and IT optimization.
Such efforts require significant collaborative time working with clinical users, leaders, and translating decisions made during such design meetings into health IT build changes for future implementation. When not in meetings, your activities will require independent work on your laptop to configure and document the design decisions and manage communications.
The person I was speaking to was curious as to how one can grow in the field of health IT and informatics beyond the initial transition.
I shared the importance of asking questions, active listening and observing, and demonstrating your interest in growth. If newly entering the field, there will be others around you with years of experience, knowledge and skills whom you can and should learn from on a daily basis. Learn from these individuals.
Ask questions that come to mind, even if you think you should know (but don't know) the answer, ask.
Listen actively during meetings to what is discussed and take notes. Ask follow up questions later as needed.
Observe during the meetings that you attend. Observe who the decision makers appear to be, what questions they ask, what the areas of consensus are and what the areas of disagreement are amongst the group(s).
All of these efforts can be done with minimal additional effort on the day to day and will help you grow in your role. However, you can also expand your knowledge and experience by showing your interest in learning more. There will be projects that require additional input that you can provide your clinical expertise toward. There will also be opportunities to learn and network in the specialty field and practice area such as conferences, webinars, and events. Growth requires your effort, interest and time as well.
Take advantage of the opportunities that come up and explore. Take the time to figure out what captures your attention and put energy into those areas.
Lastly, give it time and be patient with your growth!
Have a lovely Sunday, be well,
P.S. You can listen to this episode on our podcast, iCare about Health Tech. Enjoy!